Everyone loves fudge brownies, with or without nuts. So, when you’re making them, even for your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day, it makes sense to prepare lots of them. These will keep well in an airtight container, ready to enjoy not just on February 14th, but also in lunches, with coffee or tea, or even for breakfast.
For your Valentine’s Day dessert, top them with a scoop of your favorite vanilla bean ice cream, a drizzle of good chocolate sauce, and a garnish of your favorite red fruit or candy.
Adapted from “Welcome to Michael’s" by Michael McCarty.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Lightly butter and flour a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish. Set aside.
In a medium-sized heavy saucepan, combine the bittersweet chocolate and butter. Stir in the granulated sugar and water and place over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the chocolate has just melted and the mixture is blended, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Beating constantly, add the eggs to the chocolate. When blended, stir in the nuts, if using. Add the flour and salt and beat to incorporate. Stir in the cold semisweet chocolate until combined (no need to let it melt).
Scrape the mixture into the prepared baking dish and place in the preheated oven. Bake until the edges begin to pull away from the sides of the dish and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean of crumbs (but it may have some melted chocolate clinging to it). Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to rest for 10 minutes before cutting into squares.
Before serving warm or at room temperature, hold a small, fine-meshed sieve over the brownies, spoon the confectioners’ sugar into the sieve, and gently tap the side to dust the brownies with the sugar. Serve with vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce, and a garnish of red berries, if you wish.